Previous Accountant

K H Registered Posts: 81 Regular contributor ⭐ 😼 ⭐
I have recently been asked by a friend to help her sort out her husbands affairs, (he died in sept 10') because her husbands accountant will not respond to her calls.

However, his accountant has all his books, papers etc, and will not reply to my telephone calls or letters.
This is causing my friend a great deal of anxiety.

Has anyone else had this problem and if so how did you resolve it?




  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 🎆 🐘 🎆
    Ugh that's difficult. Do you know why he will not respond?

    Is the accountant a member of a professional body? Can you ask them to intervene?
  • K H
    K H Registered Posts: 81 Regular contributor ⭐ 😼 ⭐
    No he doesn't seem to have any qualifications, and it looks like i'm going to have to write to HMRC to get copies of everything.

    This lady has just nursed her husband through a terminal illness and this individual hasn't even got the courtesy to answer her calls.
  • Rachel
    Rachel FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 349 Dedicated contributor 🌟 🐵 🌟
    Oh how awful, does he have an office? Is it possible to turn up?

    Is probate involved? Could a solititor demand the documents for probate?
  • payrollpro
    payrollpro Registered, FMAAT Posts: 427 Dedicated contributor 🌟 🐵 🌟
    Personally I would write to him and point out that you have to submit an account to HMRC for IHT purposes, even though all of the estate is likely to pass to the widow unchallenged, and it is your intention to do this on a certain date. If he knows that you will include a statement to the effect that he has not returned files nor responded to requests and that you will also submit a statement regarding the AMLR registration he ought to have and probably doesn't this might get a response.

    I would say he is also liable for any additional costs incurred whilst trying to get around his beligerance and there is nothing to stop you from hitting him with a demand and then pursuing it through the courts.

    It's a terrible thing to have to do at a time like this but it should not detract you from doing what is right. Apart from anything else when you ask for copies of everything from HMRC you might as well shop him at the same time.

    Anyone carrying out accounting services for monetary reward must be registered for AMLR either with their professional body or alternatively with HMRC. I bet he has neither so, it's childish I know, but cause him grief, I would.

  • K H
    K H Registered Posts: 81 Regular contributor ⭐ 😼 ⭐
    Thanks for your responses, i will give him one more letter then ask for copies from HMRC.

    My guess is he has something to hide!

    K H
  • anniem
    anniem Registered Posts: 1,326
    All her husbands books and papers are the personal property of her husband, therefore the accountant has no right to hold onto them.

    How you go about extracting them is another matter, short of turning up on the doorstep and asking for them back.

    Interestingly ownership of paperwork is something that was covered in a professional ethics seminar I went to last week, so you could seek guidance from the MIP team.
    FMAAT - AAT Licensed Member in Practice - Pewsey, Wiltshire
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809
    anniem wrote: »
    ..short of turning up on the doorstep and asking for them back.

    That is what I would do.
  • PGM
    PGM Registered Posts: 1,954
    That is what I would do.

    And possibly involve the police to recover your property!
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